2023 Jeep Cherokee Lineup Reduced, V6 Dropped
Stellantis hasn't officially confirmed that the current-generation Jeep Cherokee will soon be discontinued, but it sure looks that way, and 2023 is looking like its final model year. But the successor cannot be far away, considering just how few options are left within the Cherokee lineup. For 2023, trims have been limited to Altitude Lux and Trailhawk – with engine options being limited to the 180-hp 2.4-liter inline-four and 270-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four.
That means the 3.2-liter V6 is officially gone, likely upsetting some Jeep fans. While the 2.4-liter is a serviceable engine, it doesn’t make the SUV feel particularly eager even in its most svelte configuration. The available V6 and turbocharged engines always received more praise, with the former offering linear acceleration and class-leading numbers in regard to towing for the segment. Sadly, the V6 is gone and the 2.0-liter turbo is now exclusive to the Trailhawk.
Car and Driver has reported that the Pricing now starts at $39,290 for the Altitude Lux and $42,890 for the Trailhawk, both of which come with four-wheel drive. Unfortunately, this means there are fewer bargain options available.
A base 2022 Altitude started at $31,590 for the front-wheel-drive model, with the 4x4 still retailing for $6,200 less than the current Altitude Lux – though that Lux suffix does mean you’re getting more standard content (e.g. leather seats, heated steering wheel, remote start). The Trailhawk also received a $3,750 bump over last year and has traded in the default V6 for the 2.0-liter turbo.
While this may appeal to customers concerned with fuel savings, the V6 has typically been the motor getting the most love from reviewers by offering smooth, strong acceleration and decent towing capacity (with the Trailer-Tow Group Package). The 2.0-liter turbo technically offers better performance by yielding 270 horsepower and 295 lb-ft (56 lb-ft more than the V6) and improved fuel economy. But customers are losing out on some towing might. Though, if that’s a big concern, there are probably better options to consider.
Odds are good the next-gen model is just over the horizon. Stellantis has already confirmed that the Belvidere, Illinois, assembly plant (responsible for the Cherokee) will be idled at the end of February. While production is supposed to continue through then, it’s unclear whether or not the facility will be retooled for next-gen models. Car and Driver suggested manufacturing could move to Mexico, potentially shortening turnaround.
Stellantis hasn’t confirmed anything. However, the United Auto Workers (UAW) union shop chair Local 1268 already disclosed to Reuters that company documents indicated that Cherokee production will relocate from Illinois to a factory in Toluca, Mexico.
[Image: Jonathan Weiss/Shutterstock]
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